By Jim Timm JimTimm

May 2017

 

Is everybody out there flying? I hope so. According to the NTSB the number of aircraft accidents occurring in Arizona has been down significantly lately. I hope everyone has been out there flying as usual, but doing it more safely! Better get out there and join that fly out to breakfast group, and have some fun because summer is coming fast, like it or not. That was rather evident from my last breakfast flight with the number of bugs I had on the airplane.

Are you planning on participating in the new FAA BasicMed program? The May 1 effective date for the FAA’s BasicMed regulations (14 CFR Part 68) is here, and it’s time to review the eligibility requirements for BasicMed that requires certain documentation to demonstrate compliance. Pilots must carry some of these documents while operating under the new rules, while other documents are required to be kept with the pilot’s logbook or in an electronic format. To operate under BasicMed, a pilot must meet the requirements of 14 CFR 61.23(c)(3) (as amended in the final rule), one of which is that the pilot possess a valid U.S. driver’s license and complies with all medical requirements or restrictions associated with that license. In the final rule, the FAA interpreted “valid driver’s license” to mean “a current and valid U.S. driver’s license” that is issued by a state, territory, or possession of the United States. Pilots are required to have the driver’s license in their personal possession when operating under BasicMed.  

Another eligibility requirement requires the pilot to have held a regular or special issuance medical Certificate any time on or after July 15, 2006. The most recent certificate can be expired, but it must not have been suspended or revoked, or in the case of authorization for special issuance, it must not have been withdrawn. Likewise, the pilot’s most recent medical application must not have been completed and then withdrawn or denied.

Pilots who meet this requirement by way of a medical certificate that is now lapsed or expired will not be required to carry or possess the expired medical certificate while operating under BasicMed. Furthermore, the new rules do not require the expired medical certificate to be retained with the pilot’s logbook. Nevertheless, it may be helpful to retain the expired medical for your own records.   

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The first of two documents that must be stored electronically or with the logbook of pilots qualified to fly under BasicMed is the Comprehensive Medical Examination Checklist, which is completed by the airman and the state-licensed physician who conducts the examination. Part 68 requires that prior to operating under BasicMed, and then at least every 48 months, the pilot receive a medical examination from a state-licensed physician in accordance with a checklist that was made available by the FAA on April 24, 2017. It’s now available online here. 

The same requirements also apply to the second document, known as a “Certificate of Completion” for the online medical education course that pilots must complete prior to operating under BasicMed, and then at least every 24 calendar months. The online medical education course educates pilots on issues such as medical self-assessments, medication, and fitness to fly. Once the course is completed, the pilot will provide limited information that will be sent to the FAA such as the name, address, and phone number of the airman and the physician who conducted the medical examination, state medical license number, and date of exam. Airmen must also provide certifications as to their fitness to fly and an authorization for a National Driver Register check. Once the medical education course is completed, the pilot will be provided with a certificate of completion in a PDF, which must then be printed and kept with the pilot’s logbook or stored in an electronic format and made available upon FAA request.

Good luck with participation in the new FAA BasicMed Program.

 

MISCELLANEOUS ITEMS

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The FAA has set June 5 as the date when use of the international flight plan format, also known as the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) format, will be required for all civil flight plans filed with flight service for flights within our National Airspace System and to Canada. The date is dependent on integration testing with Canada, to ensure a seamless and safe transition. On this date, it will be mandatory for all civil flights within the NAS and to Canada filed with Flight Service to use the ICAO international format.

The Bario Brewing Co. Just opened a restaurant in the Gateway Aviation Center at Gateway Airport (IWA). Presently, they are operating in a training mode and are open from 10am to 9pm, but starting June 1st they will be serving for breakfast from 6:30am to 10:30am, and be open until 9:00pm. If you fly in, present your receipt for breakfast, lunch or dinner at the terminal counter when departing, and your aircraft parking fee will be waived. They have a good menu selection with reasonable prices, and it should be worth giving them a try.  

It’s unbelievable, but they were again conducting a bunch of GPS Interference testing at the Nevada Test and Training Range near Las Vegas, NV; at the Pinon Canyon Maneuver Site near Pinon Canyon, Colorado; and at the White Sands Missile Range near Alamogordo, NM during a significant time in April. A significant amount of this testing could have impacted GPS navigation in Arizona. As usual, we received information of the testing only a day or so before the test dates thus making it very difficult to provide an adequate warning. If at any time you encounter a loss of GPS navigation signal lasting more than a minute or two that is unexplained, notify the nearest FAA Air Traffic Control facility advising them of the time, location, altitude and nature of signal loss. Also please advise APA with the same information.

From a flight safety standpoint this past month’s reporting period has again been outstanding, because from late February to very late April the NTSB has not issued any reports on current accidents. They did issue one delayed report in early April of an accident that had occurred in late February that did not involve injuries. I would like to think this was not just luck, but that everyone is being more cautious, and I hope the trend continues. See my May Aviation Accident Summary for the details in the delayed report.

Please be aware, there continues to be a lot of major and minor construction projects going on at several airports around the state, particularly in the Phoenix area. Unfortunately, the activity will be continuing on into the summer, so before you take off, make sure you check for NOTAMS at your destination airport so you don’t have a surprise awaiting you when you arrive.

APA is still continuing to work with various airports around the state, providing the pilot and aircraft owner’s perspective in the process of updating their Airport Master Plans. The City of Superior has just started an update of their Municipal Airport master plan. An update of the Sedona Airport (SEZ), Flagstaff, and Grand Canyon Airport (GCN) master plans are currently in process.

 

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THINGS TO DO - PLACES TO GO FOR BREAKFAST:

  • The May Coolidge Municipal Airport (P08) Breakfast has been cancelled. They will resume on the first Saturday in October. 
  • The second Saturday of the month, Ryan Field has been the fly in breakfast destination until the Tucson Airport Authority closed the restaurant down in January. The Airport Authority is undertaking a major renovation of the building inside and out, and they a seeking a restaurant operator that will expand the hours of operation from 6:00 am to 2:00 pm when renovations are complete. We have not heard of an opening date yet.
  • The Mesa Falcon Field EAA Warbirds Squadron fly in breakfast and car show is on the third Saturday. 
  • The third Saturday of the month there is a fly in breakfast at Benson (E95) at Southwest Aviation. (There are special fuel prices for breakfast attendees.)
  • May 19-21 will be the last Grapevine weekend of the season. Around noon, a donation lunch is served by APA at the USFS Grapevine Airstrip next to Roosevelt Lake, now newly charted as 88AZ and open, with a few small restrictions, full time! The third weekend of the month event will start up again in October. The porta-potty will also be removed for the summer and return in October.
  • The last Saturday of the month there is a fly in breakfast at Casa Grande Municipal Airport (CGZ). The Airport’s restaurant, Foxtrot Cafe, operating in the Terminal Building, is open 6:30am to 2:00pm Monday thru Saturday. On the last Saturday of the month they have a “Fly in Breakfast Special” available on the menu; the price for adults is $7 and kids $5.

 

Check with the APA Getaway Flights program and the online calendar for fun weekend places to fly.

 

I hope everyone has been able to get some safe flying time in last month. As for me, like many of you, my flying seems to get limited to the weekends, and we sure have been encountering a lot of windy weekends lately. Anyway, it seems like I’ve gained a lot of crosswind landing experience lately. Flying a light taildragger, some of that experience has been a bit challenging and exciting at times, but what the heck, it’s all been fun, exciting or not. However, from a safety standpoint, we have been encountering a lot of accidents lately, and some of them were pretty bad accidents. Please make certain your aircraft is in good operating condition and fly safely!

 

First off, I want to thank those that made the annual APA meeting in May. It was good to reconnect with some of you once again. Because there were no nominations put forth, the directors whose terms were expiring consented to running for office again and were reelected. The directors will be meeting in June to elect the officers for 2016-17, and the president elect will start the appointment of chairpersons for the various standing committees.

 

As time grows shorter for when we will be required to have ADS-B out equipment installed in our airplanes, there continues to be new information released regarding both programs and equipment. It’s pretty apparent there won’t be any slippage in the mandated implementation date, but there continues to be new information on equipment and compliance. Initially, there were a lot of questions on required equipment and how each installation would have to be accomplished, inspected, and certified. In what I thought was a major breakthrough by the FAA in making implementation much easier and cheaper for us, the FAA announced a new policy that simplifies ADS-B Out installations.

 

The FAA released a policy memo (AFS-360-2016-03-02) on March 2 that updates guidance on installation of ADS-B out systems, essentially allowing avionics shops to install ADS-B equipment on aircraft not covered by a supplemental type certificate (STC) and without having to obtain a new STC. The installer does have to obtain permission from the original STC holder. Earlier in the ADS-B upgrade process, the FAA was requiring that each aircraft model have its own STC. The FAA was concerned and wanted to ensure, as new equipment hit the market, that it worked correctly, so the original policy stated that it could only be installed via STC. They believed this would maintain a high level of their involvement and ensure that aircraft entering airspace (where ADS-B is required) are operating as intended and not creating chaos.

 

Now the FAA has issued the new policy, and it basically states, if the installation is a major alteration, it will still need field approval. This may be the case where a new antenna needs to be installed on a pressurized airplane, for example. A simple ADS-B out installation in a non-pressurized airplane will be a minor alteration and can be signed off by an A&P mechanic holding an Inspection Authorization, or by a Part 145 repair station, and doesn’t require direct FAA involvement. Basically, it’s a simple radio installation. With this change, the much feared bottleneck of getting last minute certified installations accomplished has been averted, and with a significant savings for many of us. (You can read the entire FAA March 2 Memo AFS-360-2016-03-02 here…)

 

MISCELLANEOUS ITEMS

 

The FAA is in the process of publishing a list of perhaps over 300 VORs they plan to decommission across the country. They will evaluate the impact of each VOR on approaches, departures, enroute, etc, and hopefully, they will also look to local users for comment. As soon as we obtain a list of those VORs on the decommissioning list that are in Arizona, we will advise you and the APA will be submitting the appropriate commentary to the FAA.

 

In a move to ensure that the Third-Class Medical Reform gets through the U.S. legislature, I noticed that it got attached to a defense funding bill that passed through the Senate’s Armed Services Committee. Passing with a 23-3 in favor vote, the bill, which would authorize $602 billion for the Department of Defense and other national security programs, also includes the pilot medical changes in the Pilot’s Bill of Rights 2. This action is in addition to the same thing that is attached to the FAA funding bill presently in process. I guess we now have to wait and see what comes out of the House of Representatives and finally goes to the President.

 

Two new instrument procedures will be published for Cottonwood Airport (P52) on May 26: RNAV (GPS) Runway 32, and MINGY One Departure (RNAV).

 

One of the changes on the Phoenix Sectional and TAC charts on May 28 will be the deletion of several abandoned airports. What the identifiers were or their locations was not given. Better check to see that your favorite airport is not one of them.

 

If you fly into Ak Chin Regional Airport (A39), be advised they now have an AWOS in service on 126.90.

 

Significant construction is going on at Gateway Airport (IWA) and the ILS will be down from time to time. If you are doing instrument training, be sure to check NOTAMS before taking off to check on availability.

 

Be aware, there is a significant amount of airport construction activity going on many of the airports in the Phoenix and Tucson areas, and also around the state. Be sure to check for NOTAMs before taking off for another airport so you don’t encounter a nasty surprise when you get there.

 

The June accident reporting period was certainly not very good. During this reporting period there were six accidents reported with two of them being fatal, involving three fatalities. Three of the accidents reported this period were devoid of information and it would be safe to assume they were not serious from a personal injury standpoint. See my June accident summary for details, and please make certain the airplane you are flying is airworthy and fly carefully. We don’t want to continue at this present rate.

 

APA is still working with various airports around the state, providing the pilot and aircraft owner perspective in the process of updating their Airport Master Plans. An update of the Sedona Airport (SED) and Grand Canyon Airport (GCN) master plans are currently in process.

 

THINGS TO DO - PLACES TO GO FOR BREAKFAST:

 

The fly in breakfast at Coolidge Municipal Airport (P08) on the first Saturday of the month has stopped and will restart the first Saturday in October.

The second Saturday of the month, Ryan Field (RYN) fly in breakfast is available at the restaurant next door.

The Falcon Field EAA Warbirds Squadron fly in breakfast and car show on the third Saturday has ceased operation for the summer and will restart in October.

The third Saturday of the month there is a fly in breakfast at Benson (E95) at Southwest Aviation. (There are special fuel prices for breakfast attendees.)

The monthly fly in to Grapevine Airstrip, next to Roosevelt Lake, will stop for the summer, but will resume on the third Saturday of September.

The last Saturday of the month there is still a fly in breakfast at Casa Grande Municipal Airport (CGZ). The Airport’s restaurant, Foxtrot Cafe, operating in the Terminal Building, is open 6:30am to 2:00pm Monday thru Saturday. On the last Saturday of the month they have a “Fly in Breakfast Special” available on the menu; the price for adults is $7 and kids $5.

 

Check with the APA Getaway Flights program and

the online calendar for fun weekend places to fly.

thru this restricted area at any time. The restricted area isn’t very large, and I don’t think the UAV student pilots using the area are any better than our student pilots, and I would consider giving the area a wide berth. Be aware, and avoid a serious problem.

 

Be aware, there is going to be a significant amount of airport construction activity still going on in the Phoenix and Tucson areas, and around the state. Be sure to check for NOTAMs before taking off for another airport so you don’t encounter a nasty surprise when you get there. Also, be sure to add TFRs to your preflight checklist.

 

The past aviation accident reporting period was relatively good with only one accident being reported by the NTSB. The bad news, however, was that it did involve four serious injuries. Perhaps the efforts put forth by the Wings Safety Teams with all the safety briefings has begun to pay off. Based on the low accident/injury rate in 2015, I hope we can get the pilots in Arizona to continue this trend and have a safe flying year in 2016. For more details go to my February Aviation Accident Summary report. By next month, enough of the 2015 NTSB accident information should be available to permit preparation of an accurate year end summary and comparison to previous years.

 

APA is still working with various airports around the state, providing the pilot and aircraft owner perspective in the process of updating their Airport Master Plans. An update of the Sedona Airport (SED), Deer Valley Airport (DVT), and Grand Canyon Airport (GCN) master plans are currently in process.

 

 

 

THINGS TO DO - PLACES TO GO FOR BREAKFAST:

 

 

·The firstSaturdayof the month fly in breakfast is at Coolidge Municipal Airport (P08).

 

·The secondSaturdayof the month, Ryan Field (RYN) fly in buffet breakfast should have restarted. However, breakfast is available at the restaurant next door.

 

·The Falcon Field EAA Warbirds Squadron fly in breakfast and car show is on the thirdSaturday.

 

 

 

·The thirdSaturdayof the month there is a fly in breakfast at Benson (E95) at Southwest Aviation. (There are special fuel prices for breakfast attendees.)

 

 

·Also on the third Saturday, around noon, a donation lunch is served by the APA at the USFS Grapevine Airstrip over at Roosevelt Lake.

 

 

·The last Saturday of the month there is still a fly in breakfast at Casa Grande Municipal Airport (CGZ). The Airport’s restaurant, Foxtrot Cafe, operating in the Terminal Building, is open 6:30am to 2:00pmMondaythruSaturday. On the last Saturday of the month they have a “Fly in Breakfast Special” available on the menu; the price for adults is $7 and kids $5.

 

 

 

Check with the

APA Getaway Flights
program and online calendar

for fun weekend places to fly.

 

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